Mississippi high court candidates differ on PAC money

By Emily Wagster Pettus/The Associated Press

JACKSON — State Rep. Earle Banks says his campaign is not taking money from political action committees as he runs for a state Supreme Court seat, but the campaign of the man he’s trying to unseat is accepting contributions from PACs.

Chief Justice Bill Waller Jr. says it’s legal for PACs to give to judicial campaigns, but he doesn’t know if he has received the contributions because other people are handling his finances.

Banks and Waller face off in the Nov. 6 election for an eight-year term that begins in January 2014. They spoke Monday at a forum hosted by the Stennis Institute of Government and the Capitol press corps.

Waller says drug courts save the state millions of dollars a year. Banks says he helped push the legislation creating drug courts.